Showing printing’s true colours – Sign Media Canada

Today’s expanded gamut ultraviolet (UV) inks can be used for a variety of signage and branding applications. Images courtesy Roland DGA

Right now’s expanded gamut ultraviolet (UV) inks can be utilized for quite a lot of signage and branding purposes. Photos courtesy Roland DGA

By Ginny Mumm

With the power to print straight on nearly any floor, ultraviolet (UV) LED printers have turn out to be more and more in style for quite a lot of shopper, company, and industrial purposes. This has led to some exceptional advances in printing know-how and software program merchandise lately. Consequently, the worldwide market measurement for UV LED printers is projected to develop at a compound annual development price (CAGR) of 9.5 per cent from 2023 to 2030, and attain US$758.7 million (C$1 billion) by 2030.1

The introduction of superior flatbed, hybrid, and roll-to-roll UV printers; up to date raster picture processor (RIP) software program; and new, wider ink color gamuts are main contributors to this development out there. To search out out extra, we spoke with Jay Roberts, UV printer product supervisor at Roland DGA, about how print service suppliers (PSPs) can leverage new color gamuts and know-how to enhance their UV-printed choices for shoppers.

How have color gamuts expanded over the previous few years? What components drove this enlargement?

Jay Roberts (JR): The push for expanded color gamuts got here from each producers and finish customers. The largest driving issue is the need to hit company colors extra precisely. Whereas everybody desires to have the ability to produce vibrant, enjoyable, and absolutely saturated color that pops, it’s additionally vital to have the ability to precisely print model or Pantone colors for company shoppers. The extra of these focused colors you’ll be able to hit, the higher you might be as a printing firm, and the higher the standard of merchandise finish customers can present for his or her shoppers.

The ink color know-how that has been developed during the last 10 years for the eco-solvent market—which incorporates inexperienced, orange, and lightweight cyan inks—has been translated to inks for UV machines. Purple inks have additionally been launched to reinforce the accessible color house, and bringing out particular colors helps enhance the gamut in different areas.

What are the advantages of getting these expanded gamuts for PSPs and different industries?

Raster image processor (RIP) programs help printers keep their UV colour output consistent across a variety of substrates.

Raster picture processor (RIP) packages assist printers preserve their UV color output constant throughout quite a lot of substrates.

JR: The drive for model color matching began nearly 50 years in the past, with what was then referred to as “Coca-Cola pink.” Now, it’s grown to match “House Depot orange,” “Microsoft blue,” and a complete host of different company hues. From offset to banners to point-of-purchase (POP) shows, the better your potential to hit these colors throughout quite a lot of platforms, the higher you’ll be able to serve your shoppers’ vary of print wants.

Right now’s expansions in color gamuts permit customers to focus on a bigger color house, with all the colourful and photographic components that include it. As an example, particular inks can goal as much as 89 per cent of Pantone colors, which is an enormous leap up from beforehand with the ability to goal 55 to 60 per cent. The elevated potential to focus on many extra Pantone colors represents a real enchancment in PSPs’ capability to offer excellent color output.

Inform us concerning the current evolution of inks for the UV market.

JR: When folks speak about color matching, they’re sometimes aiming to match one thing initially printed on one other platform, maybe months and even years in the past. They need their output to look good to the one who is shopping for the job. The evolution of inks has actually elevated the power for PSPs to realize a “shared visible look” between completely different printing platforms. 

An expanded gamut with orange and pink ink was developed over time and with excessive precision. The result’s an inkset that could be very efficient at reaching a shared visible look, with Delta Es (a measure of how a lot a displayed color differs from its enter color) of beneath two—a degree of distinction which is nearly indistinguishable.

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